Tag Archives: niche market

Why Google Base Is a Good Way to Start Selling

Google Base is a service separate from Google’s search engine and Google Products. As long as you have a valid Google account, you can make use of Google Base and publish information online. Published information on Google Base may include websites, files, products, and services—all categorized for easy searching. Depending on the relevance of your published entry, it may or may not be included as a Google search engine result.

This is good news for online businesses that haven’t gotten around to finishing a searchable website. It doesn’t assure instant Google ranking, but it’s a good start. Here are 5 reasons why:

1.    It makes your products already searchable while you’re still working on your website
Google Base allows you to publish almost everything. When you publish a product and categorize it as something for sale, Google Base automatically publishes the listing in Google Products—Google’s online shopping service.

Although Google Base doesn’t directly help your website’s ranking, publishing yourself in Google Base already introduces you to the online public who search for their needs via categories. These people are niche keyword users. This is why it’s important for you to already begin a relationship with them as early as you can, even while your website is still under construction.

2.    It’s free

Getting published is completely free of charge. You can post as many items as you want. Just remember to read the agreements thoroughly and don’t try going around Google’s rules. Breaking the rules could result in your account being banned and this could initiate credibility issues between your websites and Google’s indices. Don’t do anything that will get you on Google’s bad side.

3.    It’s owned by Google

Google Base is Google property. Although it doesn’t assure search engine rankings, product entries in Google Base are automatically included and indexed in another Google property—Google Products.

If Google sees that your Google Base entry is relevant enough (regardless of what category your entry is published under), it may be included as a search engine hit. If this happens, it is a good idea to link your just-finished-website to your ranking Google Base entry.

4.    It allows you to narrow or expand your search-ability
Some people may find that the strict categorization of Google Base entries immediately limits the market that they can attract. On the contrary, the categories and sub-categories already filter the market for you so that you only get the most relevant queries and Internet users get the most relevant results. It’s all about matching the right hit with the right keyword.

Even when you submit your website to Google, you’d still want to optimize for a niche market instead of going for a generic market that all of your competitors are going for.

5.    It’s very easy to use, for you and your searching public
Google Base provides easy, step-by-step instructions on how you can best submit an entry and how you can maximize the rest of Google’s properties. Best of all, the structure makes it easy for the searching public to look for what they need.

Top 5 Qualities of Your Ideal SEO Consultant

You’ve done your research and you can’t wait to get your Internet marketing campaign rolling. At this time, you already have clear goals of what you’d like your online campaign to achieve for your business. You’re in the market for a brilliant SEO consultant who can execute your plans, help you achieve your objective, and give you ROI.

With enough initial information, you’ll be able to tell the scam-SEO services from the legitimate SEO consultancy firms. Choosing the best firm for you is the critical step.

All good SEO companies offer the same basic services. It’s the quality of relationship they build with you and your business that adds value to their technical know-how. Below are the 5 most important qualities that your chosen SEO consultant must have before you sign up.

1.    Must be willing to learn about your business

After a short introduction of your business, it is always a good sign that the SEO consultant immediately asks a series of questions about your market and shows a keen interest on your business and marketing objectives.

A brilliant SEO consultant knows that his optimization efforts begin and end with your consumer. The more he gets to know your niche market, the better the solutions he can offer your business.

2.    Must know the value of market research and data analysis

Your SEO consultant should be able to appreciate the value of market research and to translate consumer insights into optimization tools.

Successful keywords and high-value traffic depends on how well you sift through research information and how well your SEO consultant can apply your data to actual optimization.

3.    Must put content quality before website aesthetics

You SEO consultant may not be a very good writer, and this is fine as long as he can tell whether or not a piece of article is written for optimization or not. For him, the most important elements of your content should be:
·    Natural integration of keywords
·    Keyword density
·    Absence of duplicate content elsewhere in the web
·    Relevance
·    Tone, choice of words, and writing style

4.    Must know the rules, terms, and agreements of the top search engines

A good consultant must always have your website’s best interest as his top priority. Make sure that he does not even think of suggesting black hat SEO or other unethical methods.

He must be aware and updated of the top search engines’ rules and terms of agreements. He must make sure that you won’t accidentally do something that would result to having your website banned and blacklisted.

This requirement should extend to his knowledge of social bookmarking websites, PR sites, top blogs, and forums. Make sure that he does not risk your credibility in any way.

5.    Must be able to give you regular reports and suggest fresh ideas

Optimizing for the Internet is a continuous process. The only way to know what to do next and what else you can do is to study reports. Be sensitive to statistics and all the factors that cause fluctuations—don’t be misled by either positive or negative spikes.

Creativity is very welcome in the SEO arena. Encourage your SEO consultant to put fresh ideas on the table. An important mark of a great SEO consultant is if he can handle constructive criticism and take on the challenge of giving better options.


PPC Keyword Tips: Convert Clicks to Sales

Pay per click (PPC) is a common online marketing tool. Online advertisers bid for the keywords they want and their PPC ad appears next to the top searches that correspond to their keywords. Advertisers are charged depending on how many users click the ad.

The good, the bad
The great thing about PPC is that it charges according to the number of people who clicked your ad and were consequently directed to your website. This online advertising tool could be cost effective if it is able to attract the right customers—those who are genuinely interested in what you have to say and offer.

On the other hand, bad keyword choices and poor copywriting for your PPC ads are disastrous for your overall campaign and could eat through your marketing budget. Imagine paying for all the clicks made by people who are interested only in freebies and bargains—worse, people who click ads just for fun.

The best way to make PPC ads work for you is to make sure you own the correct keyword associations, so that you can limit clicks to those who are genuinely interested and who make good candidates as clients. Below are 4 tips that deal with keyword choices so that you can maximize your marketing budget and assure ROI.

For the following keyword tips, let’s pretend that you’re selling eco-friendly, athletic shoes for women.

1.    Know the generic keywords and avoid bidding for them
Generic keywords are what people use to search for a category without knowing what information they need exactly. Based on our sample product, a generic keyword could be shoes or women’s shoes and its variations like shoes for women.

To the PPC neophyte, generic keywords might seem to be the way to go. However, consider how many people who search for women’s shoes would really be interested in your type of product.

Avoid generic keywords to avoid paying for random clicks by a generic market. Niche is the key.

2.    Add modifiers, track and adjust
Modifiers are words you add to the generic keyword that your product belongs to. Going back to our example, if your generic keyword is women’s shoes, the modifier could be athletic. So, your set of PPC keywords become women’s athletic shoes and its variations, including athletic shoes for women.

Adding modifiers to your keyword set automatically narrows down searches where your ad will appear next to, thereby cutting down the number of random clicks.

3.    Use long tail keywords
As the name suggests, going “long tail” adds more market-specific words that only your niche market will bother searching for. Adding eco friendly to athletic shoes for women limits the appearance of your PPC ad to a very specific search.

This kind of focus significantly lessens site visits from random clicks. You spend less as you increase your ROI by attracting only your niche market who are interested enough to end up making purchases.

4.    Say no to negative keywords
Words like “free”, “bargain” and “discount” may look attractive, but you don’t want them in your PPC ad copy. These words will effectively encourage clicks, but you’ll be inviting freebie and bargain hunters, neither of whom will give you profit.

Remember that you want quality clicks that will come from niche customers who are interested in what you have to say and offer.

Is Your SEM Consultant the Best One for You?

1.    He must know your business like it’s his own
One must know the problem to be able to give successful solutions. Your SEM consultant must show genuine interest in all aspects of your business, even those that “don’t have anything to do with marketing”.

Often, the most creative solutions are inspired by something trivial—like a particular segment in the production line or an interesting detail from the company’s history.

An effective SEM consultant should also be naturally interested to get to know how your frontline team works and how the team feels about your company. This way, he can assess if the problem needs an internal online marketing solution or an external search engine marketing solution.

It is vital that your SEM consultant understands your brand essence and your company values. If he consistently recommends “a shorter, faster way” of doing things, you might want to check if his methods are legitimate. The best search engines do not tolerate unethical SEM practices and they can—and will—penalize you if you go that route.

2.    He must know your niche market like he knows his TV remote
After agreeing on a specific market to pursue, your SEM consultant must work with you to get to know your market. The basic factors towards understanding a market include knowing:
·    How they use products in your category
·    What attitude they have towards your product, your competitors and other products/details that could be related to your brand, such as type of packaging (tube versus sachet)
·    What image of your brand and your competitors they have in their minds—to guide you towards communicating effectively

3.    He must help you make sense of research results

Besides market research, it is also important to do keyword research to help you determine the type of content that your website will offer. Your marketing consultant must be able to help you interpret the data (in this case, the list of potential keywords for your niche), and weed out the ones that you can maximize.

It is recommended to conduct periodic research and analysis with your SEM consultant. Successful marketing through any medium relies on how well you translate market understanding to communication materials.

In the case of search engine marketing, the success of your website relies heavily on your choice of keywords to optimize for. Keywords, like most elements of marketing, are not static. They evolve with your market. It is your responsibility to make sure that your SEM consultant stays on top of your changing market and recommend content revisions accordingly.
4.    He must be able to listen well
A good SEM consultant must be able to listen to you and your niche. He must be able to balance the needs of both market and brand. He must not take sides because the satisfaction of the market relies on how well a brand keeps its promise while the success of a brand relies on how well it satisfies the market.

The work of a good SEM consultant is to be able to help create a venue where your market can get to know your brand better and where the brand can tell your market how else it can address their needs.

How Writing for SEO Can Help Your Online Business

1.    Writing for SEO naturally creates niche keyword presence in your site
Writing with an SEO objective in mind gives structure to your many brilliant Internet marketing ideas. Your desire to improve your website’s ranking naturally drives you to get to know your niche like the back of your hand.

You will be presented with a list of keywords. Remember that it is your niche market that chooses which ones you should optimize for, not you. If you listen to your market better, you will also optimize for keywords better. Going for niche keywords automatically filters the visitors of your website and leaves you with good prospects and real customers.

2.    Writing for SEO makes your website carry ONLY relevant content
Search engines rank websites according to content quality and relevance. Although search engine spiders are primarily attracted to keywords, they also check whether or not your website is informative—meaning, your website must have the correct keywords and carry good content for it to qualify for ranking.

Your content is heavily dependent on your niche. Find out what they want and need to read from your website. Regularly updating your content gives your market a reason to come back and to recommend you to their peers. Interacting with your readers keeps your content in check, making sure that every word adds value to your website.

3.    Good writing with naturally integrated keywords will earn the respect of your niche
Information and keywords must be put together in a logical manner. You have to make sense to your niche. The primary goal of creating content should be to inform. If you keep this in mind, you will naturally integrate your niche keywords into your article. This is important so that your content won’t sound like an annoying sales pitch.

Aim to communicate with your market. This is why it is very important to understand them before you start writing. Learn how they speak and how they use words to refer to certain things. The tone of your content should reflect this understanding so as not to alienate your market.

Attention to spelling and grammar will earn you points for credibility and more importantly, the respect of readers and industry critics.

4.    Good content plus SEO makes it easier for your niche to come back
Good content and SEO know-how make a very powerful website. The SEO aspect makes your website easier to find while good content makes your niche stay and come back for more.

Always exceed what is expected from you. Your visitors should always get more than what they came for, so that you rise above your competition. Your brilliant content could be replicated tomorrow. However, the added value that you give to your market would be very hard to come by.

Make your website open to market interaction. Allow people to comment on your articles and allow them to post links. Hear them out and reply when necessary to let them know that you’re taking them seriously.


How to Pick Successful AdWords

Successfully rolling out your AdWords campaign requires more than the number of placements that you can own. In fact, having your AdWords appear frequently but randomly can do you more harm than good. Pay-per-click ads charge per click—it doesn’t matter whether the click you’ve paid for translates to sales or not.

Knowing the business model of AdWords, it is important to be careful about where your ad appears and who gets to see it. Below are 5 tips that can help your AdWords appear with searches that are relevant to your niche market.

1.    Know your niche
Although AdWords are simple and affordable to execute, mistakes will surprisingly cost you dearly. This is why it is important to look into conducting market researches.

Investing on knowledge about your target market doesn’t only allow you to improve your products and services. A well-planned qualitative market research gives you a better understanding of your niche—who they are and how they think. This gives you a good idea on how they use words and how they talk about your brand and your competition. Knowing these things can help you craft better AdWords copy and bid for the best, most relevant niche keywords.

2.    Misspell
Good web content relies on relevant topics, good writing style, grammar, and spelling. However, AdWords heavily rely on niche keywords that are dictated by the users. You have to take into consideration the different possible word combinations and ways of spelling. For example, the word football can also be spelled as futbol (taking European and Latin American fans into consideration) or even as footbal (studies show that this is how people misspell the word most often).

It is also important to figure out which words are most often misspelled and how people usually spell it wrongly. For your AdWords ads, it’s okay to optimize for misspelled words, as long as the content in your landing page is relevant and of good quality.

3.    Know your competition
It is important to keep yourself updated with your competition’s web content. Based on what’s available to the public, you’ll be able to tell which words they’re optimizing for. Their keyword list could be similar to or very different from yours.

Optimizing for different keywords shouldn’t make you panic. Always go back to your consumer research. Ultimately, it is the consumer who searches for you and it is for them that you optimize your content and AdWords.

4.    Write great AdWords content

AdWords give you some space to give a short headline and a description of your offer. Writing copy for AdWords could actually be more difficult than writing for your web content because the number of words you can use is very limited.

Be concise. Find a benefit that is unique to your brand and own it. That’s what you write about.

5.    Write great web page content

Each click that you pay for should lead to great landing pages. Your AdWords deal with the awareness, your web pages do the selling. This doesn’t mean that you should write sales pitches—in fact, do not write sales pitches. Your web page content should be of value to your niche so that they have a reason to stay and find themselves browsing your online catalogue.

5 Fundamentals of Social Bookmarking

With the wide variety of online marketing tools, it becomes difficult and time-consuming to find the perfect software that addresses your marketing needs. Most search engine marketers get caught up in looking for the latest software in the market that they lose track of what their marketing and communication objectives are.

Social bookmarking began as a way for users to keep track of the websites they like and share the list with their peers who most likely share their interests. The best in the field of search engine marketing saw social bookmarking as an opportunity to reach more people with less effort, while keeping the marketing budget in check.

Below are 5 points—a mix of marketing basics and social bookmarking tips—that can help you in maximizing the potentials of social networks and bookmarks.

1. Determine a niche
Whether you do digital marketing or traditional marketing, you always go back to the consumer. After all, you are appealing for a particular market to listen to what you have to say and hopefully, they’ll hear you out and make a purchase.

You don’t want to spend a lot of money talking to everybody, because not everybody is a prospect for your brand. You don’t stop filtering the market until you get to a niche market, and that’s whom you talk to all the time.

2. Research on your niche so you have a single-minded focus
After you’ve figured out whom to talk to, do your research and find out what they’re interested in talking about. Look for a way to integrate your brand into their needs and interests. Find a creative way to talk to them and tell them how your brand can address their issues. Be helpful. Know what you want to say and be consistent.

3. Speak their language
Knowing what to say isn’t enough. You have to say it right so that you’ll be understood the way you want to be.

4. Find the mother ship
The most efficient way to maximize the reach of social bookmarking is to find where your niche gathers and who has the power to influence. Choosing the most relevant social website to your niche and finding that handful of people who have the most contacts will help propel your web page. Just make sure you don’t do anything that will make them remove your link from their bookmarks.

5. Keep them after you get to them
You shouldn’t be content when your niche flocks to your website once. The challenge is to give them reasons to keep visiting your website and make purchases.

Regularly update your website content so that people will have something to look forward to on a regular basis. Make sure that your content remains relevant and helpful to them so that their interest in you doesn’t take a dip.

It would be helpful if you allow your visitors to leave comments and suggestions and that you reply to them when they have questions

Top 5 SEO Myths

Misinformed Internet marketing practitioners are quickly attracted to online services that promise fast SEO solutions. They get excited about the different “time-saving” and “low-cost” packages offered to them. They jump the gun guided by SEO myths that will make their online business go horribly wrong.

Questionable companies that offer SEO solutions tell you that they can make you rank number 1 as soon as you sign up. However, they don’t talk about sustainability and the quality of links and visitors they feed your website.

Below are the 5 most common SEO misconceptions that fraudulent companies continue to exploit to make their packages attractive. Understanding the ill effects of each myth will help you make informed decisions.

Myth 1: A month without results is a failed SEO campaign
Successful search engine optimization is something that is sustained. Successful SEO campaigns took months and years to make certain websites stick to number 1. Although sometimes they drop a spot or two in the rankings, their websites never leave the top 5, let alone the first page. This is what you want to achieve, and not a one-day-at-number-1 phenomenon.

Myth 2: You need online companies to submit your website to search engines for you
Ask yourself how many search engines you actually use. What about your friends? When you realize that only the top 3 search engines matter, ask yourself again why you need to spend for your website’s presence in hundreds of search engines and directories that no one uses?

Spreading yourself all over the Internet is good, but you have to think about what your objectives are and how you’ll accomplish them. Getting yourself listed in random search engines and directories will not do anything to boost your rankings in Google, Yahoo, and MSN. Channel your efforts to the ones that matter.

Myth 3: The more visitors, the better!
A million hits a day won’t matter unless those 1 million visitors end up in your product page and actually make purchases.

Rule number 1 of marketing tells us to always go back to your consumer. Get to know your market so that you know which Internet marketing route to take and which keywords you should optimize for. Remember that 20% of your customers will give you 80% of your revenue, if you understand them well.

Myth 4: The more links, the better!
A powerful link network is important. However, getting someone else to do it without properly understanding your business objectives could ruin your image instead of making you more famous.

Allowing your website to be linked to “every popular website and blog there is” could get you associated with names, brands, and organizations that don’t share your brand values. This could negatively impact your business and distort the way your niche market understands you.

Myth 5: A good-looking site will do it
Some questionable companies who claim to provide SEO services go as far as dropping the entire concept of optimization and just let you pay for web design. Although a good-looking website won’t hurt you, it doesn’t automatically mean that people will find you and search engines will put you on top.

Remember that search engine spiders only crawl through text content. You might want to allocate more of your resources to creating powerful content rather than investing on bells and whistles.

3 Elements of Quality Website Traffic

The success of any SEO campaign is measured through the bottom line—meaning, if your visitors actually make a purchase. As a website owner, you need to understand that getting high traffic is not enough. For your ROI and your bottom line, your website needs to consistently attract high traffic that comprises quality visitors, from prospects to repeat customers.

Below are 3 essential elements for successfully generating high-quality traffic. Keep in mind that the success of any online campaign relies heavily on how well you know your niche market.

1. Content with value
Textual content is still the star of your web pages, no matter how graphically spectacular your website looks. When people use the search engine, they expect pages with information that they need—good graphics is a frill.

Before you can decide what type of content to focus on, make sure that you have already studied your niche. You can try doing research to find out the following:

• What type of information does your niche need?
• What are your competitors doing? Is there a need that their web pages aren’t able to address?
• Where else does your market go to for the same information that you already provide?

Check for spelling and grammar errors as these show that you don’t care about your brand or your customers.

Visitors, especially those you’ve satisfied at least once, expect that you regularly update your content. Give them a reason to come back. Use the value of your content for them to check out new products in your online catalog. To make sure that every update remains relevant, you should keep abreast with the changes that happen to your niche and to your competitors.

2. A functional website
Although content takes the cake, your website has to present your content in an organized manner so that it will be easy for visitors to find what they’re looking for.

Navigation bars or sitemaps that are visible in every web page make it easier for visitors to figure out which part of the website they’re at and what other things your website has to offer.

You should always check for broken links and if the links lead people to the correct landing pages, so as not to confuse visitors.

3. Being known in the right online circles
After establishing the direction of your content, find out where else your niche hangs out in the web. Keep your eyes open for online groups, mailing lists, forums, or blogs that are related to your brand and category. Make yourself visible in relevant places online.

Build your credibility by participating in conversations and by commenting on articles related to your web pages. Eventually, you can add links to specific parts of your website, depending on the conversation flow. Keep your cool when addressing comments made against you. For all you know, these negative comments have merit. Use them to your advantage and invite these people to your website so they can see the improvements that you’ve made. Make sure that your online presence remains targeted so that you won’t be labeled as spam.